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Will Hill, New York Giants (October 27, 2013)

Will Hill – © USA TODAY Sports Images

Will Hill Claiming Second-Hand Marijuana Smoke Caused Suspension: According to a report on NJ.com, New York Giants safety Will Hill has told his friends that second-hand marijuana smoke is what contaminated his blood and led to his third drug-related suspension in three years.

The NFL announced on Friday that they rejected Hill’s appeal and that Hill will have to serve a 6-game suspension, starting with Week 1 of the 2014 regular season. If the Giants do not cut Hill, he is allowed to participate in all offseason and preseason practices and games until his suspension begins. Hill will be eligible to return to the Giants’ active roster on Monday, October 13 following the team’s October 12 game against the Philadelphia Eagles.

Hill was first suspended for four games of the 2012 season for violating the NFL’s policy on performance-enhancing substances (reportedly Adderall). Hill was suspended for four games a second time in 2013, this time for violating the NFL’s policy on abusive substances (reportedly marijuana).

In December 2013, Hill was arrested for being delinquent on child support payments. At the time of that arrest, the police reported that they detected the smell of marijuana in his vehicle, but no drug-related charges were filed.

According to the NJ.com story, some of Hill’s friends and mentors were stunned to learn about the third infraction as Hill “seemed to be settling down, staying in more and hanging out with the right people.”

“A lot of us were surprised,” said friend and former Giants teammate Deon Grant. “It was the last thing that we thought we’d be getting from him as far as his situation. Throughout the season, when I was talking to him, I was trying to get it through to him. ‘Do you know how much you could be worth if you just get serious and get focused?’ And we were on the same page.”

Though Hill has not yet spoken publicly about the third suspension, he has told his friends he was innocent and that he he thought the suspension may be overturned.

“He felt like he had a great chance of beating it because of the circumstances,” Grant said. “He said, ‘I’ll be honest with you. If it was something that I did, I would tell you I messed up. But I didn’t. It was an incident in a club where people were (smoking marijuana) and it got in my system. It’s not like how my urine was a certain kind of way before when I did do it. It’s the total opposite right now. They found something in my urine, but it’s not the same thing they found when I did make that mistake.'”

Both Grant and another unidentified source told NJ.com that they do not believe Hill has a drug dependency problem.

“I don’t think he has an issue or problem,” said Grant. “The truth, I’m almost 80 or 90 percent sure that he doesn’t have an issue and he’s not putting it in his system himself. This situation again is something where he was in the wrong place at the wrong time.”

“Will’s grown. All I really tell him is watch the company you keep. It’s all I can really tell him,” said safety Stevie Brown earlier this week. “He knows what to do.”

“I hope they give him another chance,” said Grant. “I don’t want to see him go anywhere else. I like him in the Giants uniform…But they have a slim tolerance of negative energy in that organization. I hope they can see this last incident was not really him messing up again but just picking the wrong place to be in at the wrong time.”

On the other hand, The Star Ledger says one of Hill’s previous confidants said, “He had every resource over the last eight years and blew it. He will never get better.”

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Eric Kennedy

Founder and owner of BigBlueInteractive.com, which is now entering its 20th season. Follow Eric on Twitter @BigBlueInteract.

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